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Cornerstone Monitoring Equifax Data Breach of 143M Consumers
Monday, September 11, 2017 6:55 AM

As reported last week, Equifax systems were struck by a cybersecurity breach that may have affected about 143 million U.S. consumers, one of the largest in history. Cornerstone is monitoring the situation and assessing how the breach impacts financial institutions.

Cornerstone actively supports legislation that would enact strict data security standards for entities that handle consumer information, as well as put in place a national data breach notification standard.

On Friday, U.S. House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling said his committee will hold a hearing on the Equifax data breach, date to be announced.  

"The Equifax data breach highlights the urgency of enacting data breach legislation in the current Congress," said Jim Phelps, Cornerstone's chief advocacy officer. "Consumers must have the ability to know if they have been compromised and have the tools to protect themselves. Cornerstone will continue to press members of our congressional delegation for a legislative solution, and credit union advocates are also encouraged to contact their representatives in support of breach legislation."

Intruders in the Equifax breach accessed names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and driver license numbers somewhere between mid-May and July of this year. Credit card information for about 209,000 consumers was accessed, along with dispute documents containing personal identifying information for about 182,000 consumers.

"Unfortunately, consumers don't really have a choice about whether to share their data with Equifax or the other big credit bureaus," wrote Marc Hochstein for Credit Union Journal. "The fact that Americans are all subject to Equifax makes the company's failure to protect people's data especially galling."